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Take a train on the Cotonouu to Parakou railway to Dassa (as the locals shorten the name) and see the natural beauty between the contrasting towns on Benin. Dassa is called a place of pilgrimage, where the Virgin Mary is said to have appeared in La Grotte Marial Notre Dame d'Arigbo. Around this sacred area, a basilica has since been built, containing several shrines that have religious connotations.
Natural beauty surrounds the city and the forests are beautiful to escape from the busy towns and traders. Dassa and Savalou constitute part of Collines Department which was created in 1999 after the Benin government split up the former six departments of Benin into twelve. The capital of Collines hasn't been chosen yet but will likely be Savalou, which is the bigger of the towns, but the total area is small with Collines covering 13,561 km.². This region’s sites can be seen in... Show more